page 1
page 2
page 3
page 4
page 5
page 6
page 7
page 8
page 9
page 10
page 11
page 12
page 13
page 14
page 15
page 16
page 17
page 18
page 19
page 20
page 21
page 22
page 23
page 24
page 25
page 26
page 27
page 28
page 29
page 30
page 31
page 32
page 33
page 34
page 35
page 36
page 37
page 38
page 39
page 40
page 41
page 42
page 43
page 44
page 45
page 46
page 47
page 48
page 49
page 50
page 51
page 52
page 53
page 54
page 55
page 56
page 57
page 58
page 59
page 60
page 61
page 62
page 63
page 64
page 65
page 66
page 67
page 68
page 69
page 70
page 71
page 72
page 73
page 74
page 75
page 76
page 77
page 78
page 79
page 80
page 81
page 82
page 83
page 84

Alice Springs Resort On the banks of the barren Todd River this lovely resort nestles amongst the wrinkled ghost gums and overlooks the stunning MacDonnell ranges. The centre of town is only a few minutes walk away and so this is an ideal base from which to explore this Outback town. The numerous guestrooms possess all the usual modern comforts and the restaurant overlooks the swimming pool and gardens. Gunya Titjikala, Aboriginal Community Authentic indigenous experiences are more often advertised than offered, but this desert Aboriginal community, an hour and a half south of Alice Springs, is quite genuine. The community invites just six guests to learn of their intriguing life, allowing them to participate in gathering bush tucker and medicinal plants, and listen to Dreamtime stories told by the Elders. ‘Go bush’ with the traditional land owners to visit rock art and fossil sites and learn of the secrets of daily survival that have brought this ancient culture safely through the ages. Wonderful meals add an Aboriginal twist to Australian cuisine, with a ‘bushtucker’ chef adding wild fruits and perhaps a smattering of witchetty grubs. The three luxury safari-style tents with polished wooden floors and ensuite bathrooms provide comfort in a remote desert retreat. This project is a joint enterprise with the community so the majority of the profits go to the Titjikala Foundation, focusing on health, education and school retention initiatives. Red Centre Contrasts At the geographical and spiritual heart of Australia, the Red Centre remains a sacred site to the indigenous Aboriginal people. Experience two contrasts of Australian life by spending time on a traditional Outback station and then join an Aboriginal community to learn of their ancient culture. No visit to the centre would be complete without a visit to the magnificent Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park and Alice Springs. Day 1: Arrive in Alice Springs and explore the township and museums. Day 2: Make time for a visit to the native wildlife sanctuary of Desert Park. Day 3: Head out of town for an Outback experience at Ooraminna Homestead on the working cattle station of Deep Well. Day 4: Enjoy station activities and Outback hospitality. Day 5: Return to Alice Springs. Travel south to Gunya Titjikala Aboriginal camp and experience life within an Aboriginal community. Day 6: Hear Dreamtime stories, share in traditions and join in community activities. Day 7: Return to Alice Springs. Day 8: Journey to Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. View the magnificent Uluru sunset. Day 9: Take the Valley of the Winds walk through the domes of Kata Tjuta. Day 10: Leave Uluru-Kata Tjuta National Park. EXTENSIONS Fly to Cairns and onward to beautiful Lizard Island to explore the underwater beauties of the Great Barrier Reef. See page 30 for details. tailor-made travel All our travel arrangements are on a private, individual basis to offer you complete freedom of choice. The itineraries and accommodation options throughout the brochure are designed to give you a flavour of what is possible and can be tailor-made to suit your preferences. Prices vary according to selected accommodation and season. Please call our Australia specialists on 01869 276 345 to discuss your individual requirements. NORTHERN TERRITORY THE RED CENTRE | 43 THE MACDONNELL RANGES These impressive ranges tower over the plain, a natural barrier broken by gorges, cliffs and natural pools. Running east and west of Alice Springs they are easily accessible on either a day visit from the town or as a detour on the drive to Kings Canyon. In the West MacDonnells, Simpson’s Gorge is the first of a series of attractive natural features, another is Standley Chasm, a slender gorge whose sides glow a marvellous red in the desert light. At Ellery Gorge, Ellery Creek Big Hole is an excellent swimming pool while Serpent Gorge, slightly further west, has a lovely walking trail leading to a lookout with a spectacular view. The Eastern MacDonnells host some Aboriginal sites of the local Aranada people and walking trails thread past quartzite cliffs and red river gums. The Larapinta Trail This thrilling walking trail runs for some 220 kilometres along the backbone of the West MacDonnell Ranges, with expertly guided walks presenting unequalled opportunities to take in this ancient landscape. The walks are of between three and ten days duration and are a little challenging in parts. You carry only a day pack and sleep out under the stars in a cosy bushman’s swag, with drinks and delicious freshly prepared meals provided. Gunya Titjikala Camp Gunya Titjikala camp The MacDonnell Ranges Aboriginal bush tucker

Kata Tjuta KINGS CANYON AND WATARRKA NATIONAL PARK Southwest of Alice Springs is Watarrka National Park, a scenic landscape of rugged ranges and gorges that serves as a refuge for an array of plants and animals. Kings Canyon is Australia’s largest and most spectacular, carved into a rocky plateau with vast, sweeping views, its richly coloured sandstone walls plummeting to the ‘Garden of Eden’, where tranquil pools, cycads and a maze of eroded domes are sheltered from the remorseless sun overhead. KINGS CANYON RIM WALK The six kilometre walk around the rim of this extraordinary chasm allows you to see the canyon in all its glory. The walk is at times rocky and a little steep at the beginning, but is well within the scope of the reasonably fit and surefooted. For the less agile, a creek walk leads along the canyon base through the wood, with plenty of waterholes for a cooling dip. 44 Kings Canyon Kings Canyon Resort, Watarraka National Park Within the boundaries of the national park this modern resort has gone to great lengths to minimize the impact on its surroundings yet offers an excellent standard of accommodation. Each of the numerous guestrooms is spacious and comfortable and some have the added luxury of a spa bath with a view over the rugged desert. The resort is renowned for its ‘Sounds of Firelight’ dinner, served beside an open fire, against the backdrop of a starspeckled sky. ULURU-KATA TJUTA NATIONAL PARK In the heart of Australia’s Red Centre the stone formations of Uluru/Ayers Rock and the mystical domes of Kata Tjuta/The Olgas rise up from the dunes with a wholly unexpected beauty. These icons of Australia rest on the sacred lands of the Anangu people and form the basis of many of their Dreamtime beliefs. The park was awarded dual World Heritage status for both ancient culture and its natural attributes, and it is worthwhile for anyone visiting the park to look beyond the ‘rock’ and learn something of its significance. Start with a guided walk around the base, which teaches of the ancient story of the Seven Sisters, view caves filled with rock art and see permanent waterholes that feed the thriving flora and fauna and gives a taste of the rock’s sheer size and majesty. No visit to Uluru is complete without the experience of its sunset, where flamboyant colours are painted over its flank, changing and moving by the second. Rising from the desert, some 30 kilometres from Uluru is Kata Tjuta, named from the Aboriginal word meaning ‘many heads’, its 36 rock domes creating a system of haunting gorges and valleys. Take the ‘Valley of the Winds’ trail and wander through the Olga Gorge that leads to an immense cliff face and lovely rock pool. Of equal spiritual significance as Uluru, Kata Tjuta perhaps holds a somewhat more serene and silent charm. Kings Canyon Resort